Ringo Fans Write

Editor's Note: The following are notes and observations from people who have visited the page since July 1, 2002. The comments at the top are the most recent. Please feel free to add your thoughts by dropping me a line at gshultz@airmail.net Thank you.

From Carl Gregory (Dec. 20, 2003)

I'm another one of the legions of drummers who were inspired by Ringo to play. In fact, I switched from being a lead guitarist and bought my Ludwigs because the power of his beat was unavoidable, and I had to be part of it. Lately, I've done a few "Ringo Raves" on the John Lennon Songwiting Contest forum, to the point where I had to restrain myself since the topic there is really, of course, songwriting, and I was sort of preaching to the choir. I'll toss in a couple of points, though, about my early growth as a drummer. Two particular tracks taught me more about timing and coordination in the early phases of drumming than anything else: John Bonham's work on When The Levee Breaks, and Ringo's work (he did essentially this structure on all three tracks) on Anna, All I've Gotta Do, and In My Life. Bonham introduced me to an off-time kick; Ringo revealed how space can be a bigger beat than a rim shot. I learned more later, of course, but I couldn't recommend a better set of tracks for someone starting out.

I'm really writing here, though, to bring up two topics that I never really see in Ringo discussions. First, while I recognize all those professional comments about how great his Sgt. Pepper work was, everybody always seems to overlook what I think was his best album, Rubber Soul. To my mind, there was never a more perfect set of drum chops laid down in a studio for an entire album, Not by Hal Blaine, not by Al Jackson, not by any of those studio cats, and not by any performing rock drummers. It's not just that the licks are tasty, clean, unerringly on time, and inventive; each one is absolutely perfect for the song it supports. These are all aspects of Ringo's drumming that keep coming up, but everyone seems to pick examples from other places. I think Rubber Soul is the best example of all of them.

Another point that seems to get lost is a thing Ringo told Max Weinberg in The Big Beat: Ringo is left-handed. He was one of those kids who was made to work "in reverse" because people used to think it was somehow backward or shameful or something. But think about it: the guy's a tom-tom genius (listen to Long Tall Sally), he's extraordinaly inventive, he re-invented the basic rock beat at least twice in his career (listen to Long Tall Sally by Little Richard, which is the shuffle beat that was standard before the Big Beat came in), and he did it all using the "wrong" hands and feet. Ask Keith Moon or Mitch Mitchell or even Buddy Rich to reset their kits into mirror images of themselves and then see what kind of "technicians" they are.

OK, that's my piece. Ringo forever!


From Dave Bolin of Houston, Texas (April 7, 2003)

Greetings All, I must confess that I am one of those people that consider February 9, 1964 as the ONLY REAL religious experience of my life. As it turned out it set the direction of my life... I have been a musician for almost forty years now.

Oddly enough my first in person Ringo encounter came at San Francisco Airport the evening Ringo landed there to switch to the flight that brought him back to the boys on tour in Australia We were there to pick up my father returning from a business trip. As soon as my older sister and I heard that Ringo was coming there we bailed on poor Mom and ran like crazy to the gate he was arriving at. We made it with time to spare.

The girls gathered there were in the usual MAJOR dither. I was actually pushed up into the railing right in front of Ringo as he came out sat for a moment said hello waved and was off.... It was crazy and exciting. (All the girls wanting to touch me wasn't bad either) Of course the media reported it as a riot (which it wasn't)

This experience eventually lead to me being at Candlestick Park for their concert. (I was mad then and I'm still mad... they came out in an armoured car, they were like a quarter mile away, I couldn't hear them (I was there for the music, the girls were screaming too loud and the concert sound system had yet to be invented... And it was over in twenty minutes!)

My poor father still does not understand to this day. This was BIG stuff to a twelve year old boy. So you may consider my opinion biased if you wish... BUT!! I have to say that Ringo Rama is the BEST ROCK CD in about ten years for me (Since Bruce, Baker & Moore in '93) It is a pleasure to see Ringo stretch out and do new things. The tunes are great the band is incredible Gilmour! Clapton! WILLIE !!! Folks this is a must have (even if it gets you in trouble with your dad!!) Remember Peace and Love Best Regards.


From Fred Zipeto (March 31, 2003)

Both my wife Lina and I had the opportunity to attend Casino Rama where Ringo Starr and the All Starr Band performed back in July of 2001.

It was an anniversary gift to each other to attend. Little did we know what was in store for the two of us when we got there. We had front row seats. We got there early so that we could get a feel for the place.

A distinguished fellow was walking around with these meet and greet passes, I kindly asked him jokingly how much for 2 of those passes, he grinned said a few words and walked away, but only to return a few minutes later and give us 2 passes to meet Ringo. He wisked us through security and through the hallway and into a room with 18 other people .

Several minutes later the Starr galloped in and made several comments which made us laughed. After a brief question and answer session I started to see people starting to queu up to get a picture taken with him, Well I nearly dropped to the floor. I shook his hand, both my wife and I had our picture taken with him and to top it off my wife kissed and hugged him. This man was a gentleman.

Two weeks later we had the pictures mailed to us, the story was also published in our local paper. We will never forget that man who's name I will withold, who gave us that opportunity and to this day I consider him a friend , nor will we forget that evening it was a spectacular performance.

Note: We will be attending his next performance this coming July 2003 at Casino Rama, that too is gonna be a nite to remember as our friend indicated to us.


From Jean Roberts Aug. 30, 2002

I just wanted to share a little brief not about Ringo and what kind of gentleman he truely is. In 1986 my mom and I had a fire and we lost alot of our keepsakes and some of them we managed to save that weren't to badly destroyed. After John's death, I had written to Yoko and asked her for some pictures of she and John and she sent them with a little note. I loved those pictures and had kept them up until the fire, some I still have some were lost including a few I had of John with the Beatles in younger times. Well a friend of mine from England had written to Ringo at his home in Ascot and Ringo had autographed a slip of paper for him and he told me "you can write to him, he'll answer you back just send him a note and a blank piece of paper" and I did, but I told Ringo about losing the pictures and how much they had meant to me and I was sad over the lost and if he only had one to send me I'd truely be happy. Well it was a few weeks into the summer after the fire and we had moved. I got this large envelope in the mail and it said England and I didn't think anything of it, because I have friends in England send me letters, so thinking it's one of them didn't bother to open it up straight away and went onto work that morning. That night I opened it up and out fell this piece of paper that looked liked the paper I had sent to Ringo and I picked it up and there was his signature and in the envelope were a bunch of pictures and I screamed and I cried and I just danced around the room so happily. They had came from Ringo and I was so touched and from that until this they now stand in a frame with that little piece of paper he signed for me and each and everytime I go past that frame with the pictures and his autograph. It's a great reminder, what a nice guy he really is. Ringo lifts your spirits and makes you feel like all isn't lost. He's a real nice person and I love him with all my heart. I hope he tours again in the near future, because he gives you a uplifting feeling when you leave his concerts. Wonderful man and I love him like family. Should be more people like Ringo in the world. Real nice guy. Couldn't say a bad word about him; he's good people.


 

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This page was last updated Dec. 28, 2003